New Executive Director Takes the Reins

Perth, ON, September 1, 2016 – Lanark County Community Justice Program (LCCJP) is pleased to announce the hiring of a new Executive Director. Sarah Bingham will join the LCCJP team as of September 19, replacing current Executive Director Beth Peterkin who is retiring.

The organization has experienced a growth in capacity over the past two years with a new emphasis on providing court diversion services to young adults in the 18 to 25 year-old range, the implementation of the school/youth centre initiative in restorative approaches, mentoring and training of other non-profits in the use of restorative practices, and the expansion of staffing hours. Ms. Peterkin has led LCCJP through these changes and has now decided it is time for her to step down.

“The organization is in a strong position and I am excited to see what can be accomplished over the next few years” says Ms. Peterkin. “However, I feel the time is right for me to retire and turn the leadership of LCCJP over to someone else.”

The Board of Directors underwent a thorough recruitment, screening and interview process early in August with forty candidates applying for the position.

“We are very happy to announce that Sarah Bingham has accepted our offer of employment” says Chair Murray Long.

Ms. Bingham is a Lanark County resident with over six years of related experience in the social service world. Most recently, she has been employed at Lanark County Interval House and she has a solid knowledge and understanding of vulnerable populations of all ages.

"I am honoured and excited to lead the Lanark County Community Justice team as we expand our services to create stronger, healthier communities throughout Lanark County,” says Ms. Bingham. “I am looking forward to working alongside our many community partners to continue building restorative justice approaches into regular practices. As a passionate believer in the power of this work, I can tell you this is a very exciting time for the organization and for all of us here in Lanark County."

Ms. Bingham joins Sheri Halladay (Program Coordinator) and Andrew Lynch (Community Animator) as well as about 40 community volunteers in bringing services to Lanark County and the Town of Smiths Falls. Restorative justice is a process that brings together accused persons and complainants in a circle forum, to work together to heal the harm that has been caused by an incident and to rebuild relationships. Through the BE STRONG program, LCCJP staff and volunteers are bringing the use of restorative approaches to schools and youth centres throughout the service area.

The Ministry of the Attorney General provides funding assistance needed for court diversion cases involving youth aged 12 to 17. LCCJP is also pleased to be a United Way of Lanark County partner, with United Way funding primarily used to help with cases of youth aged 18 to 25 years. The Ontario Trillium Foundation, the Law Foundation of Ontario and other community partners have made the school program a reality. More information about the Lanark County Community Justice Program can be found at